CAMPAIGN-I: 'Phone book' website set to assist searches

The first print directory for websites launches this week in an

attempt to address the short-falls of online search engines.

FlickDotCom, published by independent company FlickDotCom, uses the same

model as the Yellow Pages and lists websites in 30 different


The directory relies on advertising for its revenue, both from pure

dotcoms and bricks-and-mortar companies that sell via the internet.

The directory is being distributed to online households this week, and

will also be available at PC World stores. The directory carries more

than 300 advertisers and more than 4,000 website listings.

According to the publisher's research, more than two-fifths of internet

users have trouble finding what they need over the web and more than

one- third give up searching after five minutes because they cannot find

what they need.

The directory will be updated annually but the publisher plans to issue

a CD-Rom version, which will be revised quarterly, as well as a website

for the catalogue.

The founder and sales and marketing director of FlickDotCom, Elaine

King, said: "It's a very tenuous, volatile market, but we have gone out

and pitched to the clicks-and- mortar companies who are bound to be

there in 12 months' time, as well as the pure dotcoms such as eBay and


Chris Ketley, a managing partner at Zenith Interactive Solutions,

expressed doubts about the validity of the directory because it would

only be updated annually.

He said: "Have you ever looked at a printed web directory and noticed

how out of date it is? It's likely to send people to homepages only,

rather than specific sections of sites. Freeserve, for example, may be

the best place to go for everything you might ever want to do, but how

will they handle the depth of content sites like this have?"